The Festival of Science 2017
Bharat Ratna awardee, eminent scientist and Head of the Scientific Advisory Council to the Prime Minister of India, Professor C.N.R. Rao along with Stanford University professor and Nobel Laureate for Signature Award in Graduate Education, Richard Zarewill inaugurated the Festival. The 3-day festival saw participation of over 200 children from across 40 different schools, ranging from international to government schools.
Parikrma Festival of Science has always been based on a contemporary topic within the field of science. Keeping this in mind, the theme of this year’s festival was Soil & Agriculture .Soil is the life and pillar of agriculture and maintaining a healthy soil demands intense care and effort from farmers. Agriculture is the backbone of the Indian economy. The aim of this year’s festival was to create awareness and cultivate an interest in the field of agriculture. We hope to revive the ‘cool- factor’ in being a farmer and cultivate an interest in young minds to consider a career path in agriculture.
The program included interactions with eminent scientists like Professor Balakrishna Gowda, Professor at University of Agricultural Sciences, Dr. Ranganath Navalgund, Professor at ISRO, Bangalore and Ms. Audrey Kitagawa, former assistant to the Secretary General of Children and Armed conflict in the United Nations among others.
This year we have also tried to include more interactive hands-on activities for the students such as a Food & Soil Audit where children understood the connection between the food they eat and its impact on their health and health of the soil. Children were also engaged in Soil Testing experiments. What was special this year was the Parikrma Mandi, where entrepreneurs in the field of agriculture displayed their products and spoke about their venture. Stalls by Daily Dump, Black Baza Coffee, Organic fruits and vegetables and a Millet stall were a few among others. The students visited the University of Agricultural Sciences at GVK and a quaint little organic farm called ‘My Organic Farm’ in Jakkur which grows purely organic vegetables right from corn to dill.
The Parikrma Festival of Science has been created with the vision of fostering collaborative rather than competitive discovery among school children and to help them explore the role of science in everyday life in a fun way. In the regular school environment, children can ask questions but only within the limitations of time and resources that school curriculums permit. What sets the Parikrma Festival of Science apart is our aim at creating a platform for larger discussions on science and society. The primary purpose is to create not just in-house scientists but socially engaged scientists.
The third edition of the ‘Parikrma Festival of Science’ was conducted at the Jawaharlal Nehru Center for Advanced Scientific Research (JNCASR), Bengaluru, between February 14th -16th 2017.
We had our first Parents meeting at the Maruthinagar Government school this month. This school will be our first Parikrma Way school. The school already sports the Parikrma colours. We have started giving the students of this school a slice of what we consider a very important part of the Parikrma Education Philosophy... giving exposure.
We invited the Grade 7 students to the Parikrma Festival of Science and some students were invited to speak at the British Council event held on March 9 2017 to celebrate International Women's Day. One student was trained to speak in English and the other in Kannada on what they thought about women's place in society.
We believe in giving our children the opportunity to express themselves and that spirit is slowly being inculcated in this school that we have adopted.
The best thing yet? We saw a full attendance of partents at the meet - the first at this government school. We are thrilled!